Our Mission

PrepHQ’s mission is to provide high-quality and affordable test prep to students all over the country. We offer 20-hour weekend camps that go over everything a student needs to know to get into college, starting from acing the ACT or SAT, and then ending with how to craft the perfect application to get into the school of their dreams.

 

We started this company to democratize access to both test prep and higher education. We know that a high SAT or ACT score can be the key to unlocking college options, and we don't want students to be limited in life because of the results of a single test.

 

Through our camps, we can help thousands of students get into college... and pay for it too. Plus, we partner with schools and nonprofit organizations that serve low-income students, and we teach many courses at absolutely no cost. The students who attend our normal weekend camps help make this kind of impact possible.

Our Team

Grant McCarty

Founder / Lead Instructor

Grant is the founder of PrepHQ and the company's lead instructor. His testing record includes perfect scores, a U.S. Presidential Scholar nomination, and recognition as a National Merit Scholar. On top of all this, his teaching record is extensive as well. He has over five years of experience working with students individually and in a classroom setting, and he has helped over 1000 students crack the ACT and SAT.

Outside of test prep, Grant recently graduated from the University of Alabama. He was awarded the top scholarship package in the nation while at UA, receiving over $300,000 in merit aid, and he completed his degree in just two years with a 4.0 GPA. He now attends Johns Hopkins University, pursuing his Masters in Business Administration and pitching for their varsity baseball team. He also received the University's top scholarship.

Alex Balasky

Co-Founder / Curriculum Lead

Alex is a National Merit Finalist and stands among the .0002% of individuals who have achieved a perfect score on the ACT. He has previously held positions at two national tutoring companies where he helped guide over 500 students to higher test scores, scholarship awards, and college admissions. Very few instructors in the country have his level of testing knowledge and teaching experience.

 

Alex currently studies Applied Mathematics and Computer Science at the University of Southern California after being awarded $150,000 in scholarship grants. His plan is to attend graduate school for International Economics at the University of Amsterdam.

Cyprien Toffa

Design Lead

Cyprien is in charge of designing PrepHQ's new web app: PrepHQ Connect. This platform will allow us to facilitate long term mentorship between our instructors and students, helping to establish ourselves as more than just a test prep company. The goal is to bridge the gap between our camps and college attendance by providing students in our partner programs with an all-in-one resource for college admissions.  

 

Cyprien attends the University of Southern California, studying Computer Science and Business Administration. Much of his work focuses on the intersection between education and technology. When not leading digital education initiatives, he is an intern at Facebook, helping design the company's primary app used by billions of people across the globe. He hopes to leverage that experience in his work at PrepHQ.

Our Perfect-Scoring Instructors

Mara Senchak

College of William & Mary

Kiko Demetriou

University of Virginia

Alejandro Banuelos

University of Pennsylvania

So Who Cares?

We do. For many of the students that attend our weekend camps, their standardized test scores are the determinant factor in whether or not they will be able to attend the schools they want — and in many cases, if they attend college at all. That's why we offer our weekend camps for free to students who qualify for free or reduced lunches. We understand that there are very few test prep options out there that are cheap, or even effective, which is exactly why strive to offer both the highest quality test prep option in a succinct weekend, in addition to the fact that we provide free services for students who would otherwise not be afforded them. 

Here at PrepHQ, we understand that students don't learn as effectively when they're merely being taught by some impersonal tutor or teacher, which is exactly why we only hire college students who got perfect scores on their ACTs and SATs, as we see them as not only excellent educators for students, but as role models that students can empathize with and look up to. 

We started this company because we saw a problem and decided we wanted to do something about it. According to a 2016 study by The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, schools that were located in high-poverty and low-income areas of the country were shown to produce more than 25% less students that attend college than schools considered low-poverty and higher-income. This data begs the question: Why do these schools produce less college enrollment? The answer is money. So many of these students have unrealized potential that is being put to waste to their families' inability to pay for tutoring. Even if they could, so many tutoring services that exist currently are impersonal and ineffective. So many test prep companies only exist to make money.

We don't, which is why we offer many of our courses and camps at no cost. According to the same study by The National Student Clearinghouse Research Center, there is a direct correlation students attending high poverty schools and being on free or reduced lunch programs. We understand that if paying for their next meal is an issue, paying for a tutoring service would be the last thing on the minds of these families. We also understand that there is so much wasted potential at low-income schools, and that something needs to be done about it. And that's exactly what we're doing. 

In as little as one weekend, sometimes at no cost, we offer students help that changes their lives. By simply attending one of our weekend camps, student scores go up by, on average, 4 points on the ACT, which equates to roughly 170 more points on the SAT. To many of our students, these increases lead to hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of scholarships that otherwise would simply not be attainable. That's why we do what we do. In the current landscape of college, with rising tuition rates that show no sign of slowing, scholarships are becoming more and more important in determining whether or not a child could even go to. Subsequently, ACT and SAT scores are increasingly being sued as metrics in which to measure college preparedness, which is why so many scholarships have ACT and SAT score requirements.

That's who we are. In a perfect world, every student would have the opportunity to attend their dream school and receive a robust education. Unfortunately that's not the case — but it doesn't have to be. That's why we're fighting to deliver tutoring and education services to as many students as possible.